Harvesting of Fruits For Jams & Jellies
Fruits are an excellent source of food, and they have pH, usually below 7. They are rich sources of vitamins. Fruits are harvested when they become mature, which means the fruit’s color and flavor are at the peak. There are different methods for harvesting fruits, and the technique used will depend on the type of fruit.
Standard harvesting methods are hand harvesting, harvesting with hand tools, and harvesting with machinery. In fruits like mango and avocado, the harvesting is done by placing the cushions around the tree to prevent fruit damage when dropped from high trees. Usually, pre-cooling of some fruits is done to remove the field heat, which will help keep the fruits’ quality during storage.
Harvesting of Berries
Berries is usually harvested during summer, and their maturity is monitored by size and color. However, aroma and firmness are also judged during the harvesting of berries. Berries have a very short storage life, and they should be harvested at the right time to increase the shelf life of berries.
When To Harvest Berries
There are different types of berries, and they have other harvesting times. Strawberries are usually harvested at the start of June, while elderberries are harvested at the end of June. Blackberries are traditionally harvested in late August or at the beginning of September. Berries should be harvested with a cap, and the stem should be attached to it.
Berries should be harvested during morning time because they have sweetness at the peak in the morning. All berries should be refrigerated after harvesting for three to five days. The humidity during storage should be 90% to 95% for extending the shelf life of berries. This refrigeration will stop the fugal growth as they have high water concentration.
How To Turn Berries Into Jam
Berries have a rich source of phenolic compounds and ascorbic acid (Vitamin c). To make the jam pulp of the berries is used. Berries are further processed to jam to increase their shelf life for up to 6 months. This processing of berries into jam also provides the diet variety in the off-season as a portion of food and prevents fruit waste.
Jams can be used with slices of bread and can be used in the top creamy desserts. The jam can be preserved for a year if the jam’s jar is not opened, and the seal is working correctly and not broken.
Ingredients To Make Jam
1. Add the sugar and the berries to your pot.
2. Take a plate and put it in the refrigerator for chilling, which will be used later to check the jam’s consistency.
3. Mix for at least 15 minutes until the all the sugar is mixed with berries.
4. Place the mixture of sugar and berries on a medium temperature setting burner and heat it for 15 minutes until the berries burst and juice from them. Stir often to prevent burning.
5. Increase the heat from medium and continuously stir it to prevent sticking and cook for 50 minutes until the whole berries are broken down and the juice becomes thick.
6. Continuously stir the mixture to avoid the sticking of jam to the bottom or sides of
the pot and heat it until it becomes very thick. The water present in the juice will evaporate.
7. The jam becomes thick due to pectin present naturally, which acts as a thickening agent in the whole process.
8. When the jam becomes thick, add the lemon juice and then do continuous stirring and heat it for at least 5 minutes.
9. To check the jam’s consistency, take out the chilled plate, put a bit of jam on it, and chill it, and after chilling, check its consistency by dragging your spoon through it.
10. If the jam holds its shape, it means the jam is ready.
11. Remove the heat from the jam and allow it to cool at the room temperature for some time.
12. Put the prepared jam in the jars and leave at least a half-inch of the pot from the top and seal the jars.
13. After sealing, the jars put the jam in the refrigerator to keep the better quality of jam.
14. Use the jam within the weeks or within a month.
Tips: To make the jam smoother, you can crush the berries with your hands or use the potato masher.
Turning Berries Into Jelly
Berries juice is squeezed, and it is used to make the jelly instead of using the pulp of the berries. Berries are processed to jams to provide the variety in our food. Their shelf life increases for some weeks or months, depending upon the conditions provided.
The opened jars containing jelly can be stored for 6 months in the refrigerator. Still, if the jar is not opened and the seal is not broken and is working correctly, it can be stored for a year or more than a year.Jellies can be used with other foods like Yogurt, and Ice-cream can be used with the dessert in our diet.
1. Take the berries and make the juice of berries with a juice squeezer in a bowl.
2. Add the squeezed juice in the pot, which should be substantial from the bottom.
3. Put the pan containing juice on the heating medium.
4. Add the sugar in the juice which is present in the pot.
5. Add the lemon juice in the mixture present in the pot.
6. Add the pectin in the above mixture to make it thicker, and pectin in this solution will act as a jelling agent.
7. Continuously stir the mixture with the help of the stirrer.
8. If any foam is formed and present in the pot, remove the foam with a spoon’s help.
9. Heat the whole above mixture not more than 2 minutes.
10. Put the whole mixture in the jars and close the lid of the jar and seal it.
11. Fill the pot with water and boil the water and put the jar in the water.
12. Heat the jar for at least 10 minutes.
13. After 10 minutes, turn off the heat and leave the jar in water for some minutes.
14. After some time, remove the jar from the water with the jar lifter’s help and allow the jar to cool.
15. Leave the jar for cooling for 24 hours at room temperature.
16. Check the lids of the jar for seal.
17. If sealed properly, Store the jelly and enjoy whenever you want to eat the jam but within the weeks.
Tip: If you do not have a juice squeezer at home and want to make the jelly, crush the berries with your hand or potato masher and boil the crushed berries in the water pot and make the juice of berries to make the jelly.